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pinballlooking 04-22-14 10:46 AM

Chevy Volt (good earth day post.)
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I was not sure where to post about a EV car but Conservation seems to be a good place since we are really conserving gasoline!
I have posted about it in my solar thread but I always thought it should stand on its own.

The Volt is really an EV with extended range generator.

When in EV mode it just uses the battery. Up to 100 mph so I am told anyway because I have never driven it that fast.

We bought a Chevy Volt Feb 2013 we love the car.

We have driven 20,029 EV miles solar power so great Earth day number.

We have driven 4,092 miles on gas we have used a total 119 gallons of gas in the car.

No oil changes, no trip back to the dealer. I did rotate my own tires and have the windows tinted.

The Volt will charge @ 120 volts but we use 240 a full charge takes about 4 hours for a full charge. The very nice thing with the volt is when your charge runs out it switches to gas and keep going. This is even better for people like us that don’t live in town. So if you need gas for part of your trip the first EV part still allows some great MPG.

It is about $1.20 to charge with .10 kwh power but even better if you have solar. Solar and EV’s go hand and hand.

We have enough solar capacity to cover our house and charge our car most months.
Chevy Volt Electric Car | FAQ | Chevrolet

Here is a picture my Volt getting a drink at Greenville SC Zoo free EV power provided to promote clean driving.

If you have an EV lets hear from you. What do you have how is it working for you?

pinballlooking 05-14-14 08:19 AM

Our 14 month old Chevy Volt just hit 1,001 gallons of gas saved.
We have 26,006 miles on it with a lifetime MPG 201 (we have used 129 gallons gas since buying it)
We have driven 21,510 electric solar power miles.
No oil changes needed. That has saved doing 8 oil changes for that many miles.
No reduction in EV (elect Miles) on a charge actually we get more now but that is because we a use to driving it now.

For my nonsolar power fiends.
Our power cost .10 KWh we get about 40 miles on a charge (more is the summer less in the winter this is adv)
The cost of electricity to drive all those miles was $645 the cost of gas was $3,300. (I put gas cost @3.30)
8 oil changes @20 =$160
Without solar the savings was still $2,814.7

Daox 05-14-14 08:33 AM

Very nice. I really like the idea of a Volt with the smaller EV range and then a backup engine when needed. I don't need much range to go to work and back each day (14 miles total). So, it would almost never spin up the engine.

pinballlooking 05-14-14 08:43 AM

It has really worked out good for us. We drive our kids to school 39 miles round trip charge up and do it again in the afternoon. So we drive 80 or more EV miles a day.

The other day I was picking my son up from a party and I did not go the interstate I got 50 EV miles on a one charge. (40-42 when it is warm out in more the norm)

You would not need gas until you did a longer weekend trip.

Daox 05-16-14 10:18 AM

Yep, it would be great. My main hang up is I'm not willing to dish out that much for the car. However, I am thinking about doing a DIY PHEV conversion on a car of mine... if I ever get time to get around to doing it! I've helped a few local guys build EVs of different sorts (cars, trucks, motorcycles), and my riding lawn mower is a EV conversion done by myself. Its a heck of a lot of fun.

pinballlooking 05-16-14 10:31 AM

They are not cheap but cheaper than they were.
Volt with the new lower price is about 32,000 – 7,500 Fed tax credit = 24,500

Some states give a tax credit SC gives $1,999 tax credit. That puts it at $22,500
It is alot nicer than most $22,500 cars. The also run 0% interest on top of that for time to time.

It will be fun reading about your conversion.

Elcam84 05-16-14 01:36 PM

I have talked to a few Volt owners locally and they are somewhat happy with them. The reason they aren't really happy is because they don't get the results like you have shown and that's because of our climate here. We run the AC in cars basically 9 months a year and that drops the range allot. But then you add in the drop in mileage due to the fact that our temps are so hot and that has a big effect on how well batteries output and charge and heat dramatically shortens battery life.
The people I have talked to here rarely go a day driving without the engine starting once. Also we have allot of miles to drive for everything here.

That said even with the drawbacks it still isn't a bad car though when I compared economics the daughters little Versa note was equivalent to operate unless you have free charging stations or solar.

pinballlooking 05-16-14 01:52 PM

Running AC does not take that much range away now running the heater does take a lot of range away.

When I got 50 mile on one charge the other day the AC ran the whole time. I would like to see them switch to a heat pump for heat.

The lithium batteries are really pampered they are water cooled and they are warranted for 8 years 100,000 miles. There are people with 50,000 EV miles that have not lost range.

Here are some actual Volt drives numbers.
Volt Stats! Tracking real world usage of Chevy Volts in the wild...

With all EV or EV extended range cars you need to look at how you use your car and see if it is a good fit.
They are not the right fit for everyone but for lots of people the work very well.

It has some of the highest owner satisfaction of any car.

Daox 05-16-14 01:58 PM

The Volt is also crazy conservative on how much pack capacity you use. It has a 16 or 17 kWh pack, of which you can only use 12 kWh (I believe). Reducing the depth of discharge with this technique is what gives the Toyota/Ford hybrids the ridiculously long battery life they have.

pinballlooking 05-16-14 03:20 PM


Originally Posted by Daox (Post 38268)
The Volt is also crazy conservative on how much pack capacity you use. It has a 16 or 17 kWh pack, of which you can only use 12 kWh (I believe). Reducing the depth of discharge with this technique is what gives the Toyota/Ford hybrids the ridiculously long battery life they have.

Todays Volt has a battery pack of 16.5 kilowatt-hours, of which it uses only 10.8 kWh–or 65 percent.

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